Welcome to NFLEvolution.com, where you will find information on the many programs, initiatives and partnerships the NFL and NFL member clubs support to protect the health of the members of the NFL family and to encourage safe play at all levels of football. The NFL’s commitment to the health and safety is something that all of us have been actively pursuing for many years.
For many of our fans, the most visible examples of our efforts to protect players are our playing rules, which are focused on fostering safe and fair play. As you will find by exploring this site, our efforts go far beyond what you see on the field.
We have taken a proactive role in supporting and funding research that addresses a wide range of health concerns for current and former players and society as a whole. The NFL has made significant investments in supporting independent medical research studies by leading institutions on a variety of health matters,. The science behind these issues is complex, with new findings and key learnings emerging on almost a daily basis. In addition, through our Collective Bargaining Agreement, we have committed more than $100 million over the next 10 years to medical research, with the vast majority going to research on brain injuries. We are proud of our role in advancing research and firmly believe that a variety of perspectives must be heard in order to improve awareness and education on these critical issues.
Our effort to support the health and well being of our former players is of particular importance to me personally. For example, we have established programs to provide financial assistance to retired players with critical medical needs, including the 88 Plan, which helps support our former players struggling with dementia, Alzheimer’s and ALS. We have also created the Player Care Foundation, which helps address a variety of medical needs of our former players.
The NFL not only has a long standing commitment to the health and well being of its players, but to players active in collegiate, high school and youth programs. We recognize that the NFL is looked to as a leader and that this position offers an opportunity and responsibility that we not only accept but embrace. Within this site, you will find information on programs to promote health and safety at these playing levels, including our partnerships with organizations such as USA Football and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in areas such as head injuries, proper hydration, and avoiding the use of performance enhancing drugs, among others.
The most visible and important part of the NFL will always be the individuals who play our sport. We believe the support we give today in the areas of injury prevention and treatment, as well in health and safety research, will continue to have a profound and positive impact on our current players and future generations who will one day play the game.
We have also served as advocates for legislation to improve the safety of all youth sports by supporting the passage of legislation at the state level that would establish a more formal and aggressive approach to treatment of concussions. Such legislation has been signed into law in several states, including the Lystedt Law, which was passed in Washington State in 2009 and named for Zackery Lystedt, a star football player on his youth team who was permitted to return to play in a game following a concussion and who then suffered life-threatening injuries. The NFL will continue to be a strong advocate for the passage of Lystedt Law or a law of similar significance in all 50 states.
On behalf of the NFL, I would like to thank you for supporting our efforts to make our game as safe and healthy as it can be for all who participate, and to set an important example for players at all levels of play. Please visit this site often for updates on news, events and emerging viewpoints on key issues.
National Football League